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Question text

In which verses of Quran, Ali (a.s.) is called Mu’min (a believer)?


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Answer

According to Sunnis’ exegesis, in the following ten verses of Quran, Ali (a.s.) is called Mu’min:
1. ﴿أَفَمَن کَانَ مُؤْمِنًا کَمَن کَانَ فَاسِقًا لَّا يَسْتَوُونَ﴾“Is he then who is a believer like him who is a transgressor? They are not equal”. [1]
In “Tafsir” [2], Tabari has narrated from ‘Ata’ ibn Yasar that: “Walid ibn ‘Uqbah ibn Abi Mu’ayt and Ali (a.s.) has an argument. Walid said: “I am more eloquent than you. My sword is sharper than yours, I am more powerful than you, in defeating the enemy”. Ali (a.s.) told him: “be quiet, you are wicked man”. Meanwhile, the following verse was revealed:
“Is he then who is a believer like him who is a transgressor? They are not equal”.
This tradition has been mentioned in “Sharh Nahjul-Balaqah” by ibn Abi al-Hadid, he has narrated from his teacher that he said: “there is no doubt in the validity of this tradition, because the well-known people have narrated it and the people have consensus on it”. [3]
2. ﴿هُوَ الَّذِيَ أَيَّدَکَ بِنَصْرِهِ وَبِالْمُؤْمِنِينَ﴾“He it is who strengthened you with his help and with the believers”. [4]
In “Tarikh Madinah Damishq” [5], Hafiz Abul-qasim ibn ‘Asaker has narrated from Abu Hurayra that he said: “it is written on the heaven that: there is no God but Me, Who is One and has no partner, Muhammad (s.a.) is My servant and messenger, I confirm him by Ali. The following is the word of the Exalted God in His holy book: “he it is who strengthened you with his help and with the believers”. The word “believers” refers only to Ali”.
Sayyid Hamedani has narrated from his holiness Ali (a.s.), in eighth Mawaddah of his book “Mawaddah al-Ghorba” that he said: “the Prophet (s.a.) told me “that I saw your name next to mine in four places: in my ascension journey to heaven, when I arrived at Baytul-Moqaddas, I saw it was written on a rock “there is no God but Allah, Muhammad (s.a.) is Allah’s messenger. I confirm him by his minister Ali”. When I arrived at Sadrah al-Montahi, I saw this sentence on it “surely I am Allah, there is no God but Me, Who is One. Muhammad is the best of my creatures. I confirm and help him by his minister, Ali”. When I arrived at the throne of God, I saw it had been written on its pillars that “I am Allah, there is no God but Me. Muhammad is my beloved from among my creatures. I confirm and help him by his minister, Ali”. When I arrived at heaven, I saw this sentence on its door that “There is no God but Me. Muhammad is my beloved from among my creatures. I confirm and help him by his minister, Ali”.
3. ﴿يَا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ حَسْبُکَ اللهُ وَمَنِ اتَّبَعَکَ مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ﴾“O Prophet! Allah is sufficient for you and (for) such of the believers as follow you”. [6]
Hafiz Abu Na’iim has narrated in “Faza’iil Sahabah” with his own document that this verse has been revealed about Ali (a.s.) and in this verse, the word “believers” refers to Ali (a.s.).
4. ﴿مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ رِجَالٌ صَدَقُوا مَا عَاهَدُوا اللهَ عَلَيْهِ فَمِنْهُم مَّن قَضَى نَحْبَهُ وَمِنْهُم مَّن يَنتَظِرُ وَمَا بَدَّلُوا تَبْدِيلًا﴾“Of the believers are men who are true to the covenant which they made with Allah: so of them is he who accomplished his vow, and of them is he who yet waits, and they have not changed in the least”. [7]
Khatib Kharazmi in “Manaqib” [8] and Sadrul-Huffaz in “kifayah al-Talib” [9] have narrated from Ibn Jarir and other exegetes that the following part of the preceded verse is about Hamzah and his companions,﴿فَمِنْهُم مَّن قَضَى نَحْبَهُ﴾so of them is he who accomplished his vow). They made an agreement with God that not to abandon the battle field. They fought against the enemy, until they died as martyr in the way of God. The following is about Ali ibn Abi Talib (a.s.), ﴿وَمِنْهُم مَّن يَنتَظِر﴾“and of them is he who yet waits”. Ali (a.s.) strived in the way of God and never went astray, and never changed his method.
Ibn Hajar has written in “Sawa’iq al-Muhraqah” [10] that: “when Ali was addressing on the pulpit in Kufah mosque, someone asked him a question about this verse (Of the believers are men who are true to the covenant…). He answered that: “O God, forgive me, this verse has been revealed about Hamzah my uncle, ‘Ubaydah ibn Harith ibn ‘Abdul-mutallib my cousin and about me. But ‘Ubaydah was killed as a martyr in Badr battle and Hamzah was too, in Uhod battle. But I am waiting for a day to be killed as a martyr by the most wicked person of the community until my beard be soaked in my head’s blood. My beloved, God’s Prophet Abul Qasim (s.a.) has made this agreement with me”.
5. ﴿إِنَّمَا وَلِيُّکُمُ اللهُ وَرَسُولُهُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ الَّذِينَ يُقِيمُونَ الصَّلاَةَ وَيُؤْتُونَ الزَّکَاةَ وَهُمْ رَاکِعُونَ﴾“Only Allah is your Vali and his messenger and those who believe, those who keep up prayers and pay the poor-rate while they bow”. [11]
Abu Ishaq Tha’labi has narrated in his [12] (with the documentation of Abuzar Qaffari) that: “one day I performed noon (Zuhr) prayer with the Prophet (s.a.), a poor man asked people for help but they gave him nothing. Then he raised his hands to the sky and said: “O God, Be aware that in the mosque of Your Prophet (s.a.), I asked for help but they gave me nothing. Meanwhile, Ali (a.s.) was performing prayer and was bowing (position of Ruku), he indicated to the poor man with the smallest finger of his right hand, on which there was a ring. That poor man came forth and took the ring out of his finger”. The Prophet (s.a.) saw what happened. Then he looked at the sky and said: “O God, my brother Moses asked you something: “he said: o my lord! expand my breast for me, and make my affair easy to me, and loose the knot from my tongue, (that) they may understand my word; and give to me an aider from my family: haroun, my brother, strengthen my back by him, and let him share my task” [13] You answered his prayer and said: “We will strengthen your arm with your brother, and we will give you both an authority, so that they shall not reach you; (go) with our signs; you two and those who follow you shall be uppermost” [14]. O God, surely I am your Prophet and your chosen, expand my breast for me, make my affair easy to me and give me an aider from my family. Appoint Ali for this job and strengthen my back by him”.
Abuzar (May God be pleased with him) said: “the Prophet’s prayer had not yet finished that Gabriel was sent down by the Exalted God and said: O Muhammad say “Only Allah is your Vali and his messenger and those who believe, those who keep up prayers and pay the poor-rate while they bow”. The generosity of Amir al-Mu’minin and revelation of this verse about him have been narrated by many of exegetes and tradition scholars. In this regard, some of their names are as follows: “1.Tabari in Tafsir 2.Vahedi in Asbab al-Nozul 3. Razi in Tafsir 4.Muhiboddin Tabari in al-Riyaz 5.ibn Kathir Shami in al-Bidayah Wal-Nihayah 6.Hafiz Siyuti in Jam’ al-Jawame’ (according to what has been stated in Kanzul ‘Ummal) 7. Ibn Hajar in al-Sawa’iq al-Muhraqah. [15]
6. ﴿أَجَعَلْتُمْ سِقَايَةَ الْحَاجِّ وَعِمَارَةَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ کَمَنْ آمَنَ بِاللهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ وَجَاهَدَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللهِ لاَ يَسْتَوُونَ عِندَ اللهِ وَاللهُ لاَ يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الظَّالِمِينَ﴾What! do you make (one who undertakes) the giving of drink to the pilgrims and the guarding of the sacred mosque like him who believes in Allah and the latter day and strives hard in Allah’s way? they are not equal with Allah; and Allah does not guide the unjust people”. [16]
Tabari has narrated in his exegesis [17] with the documentation of Anas that: “one day Abbas and Shaybah ibn ‘Uthman (Ka’bah keeper) were boasting. Abbas said: “I have priority over you. Because I am the uncle of the Prophet (s.a.), the successor of Abdullah (Prophet’s father) and I supply water to the pilgrims (Saqi)”. Shaybah said: “I have more priority over you. Because I am God’s trustee in keeping ka’bah and its treasurer. Why didn’t He choose you to be the treasurer of His house but He chose me?”. These two men were discussing until his presence Ali (a.s.) arrived. Abbas told him: “Shaybah is boasting and he thinks that he has more priority over me”. His presence Ali (a.s.) said: “O uncle, what did you say to Shaybah?” Abbas answered: “I said that I am the uncle of the Prophet (s.a.), the successor of Abdullah (Prophet’s father) and I supply water to the pilgrims (saqi). I said that I have more priority over him”. His presence Ali (a.s.) asked Shaybah that what he had said in response and Shaybah said: “I said that I have more priority over you. I am God’s trustee in keeping ka’bah and the treasurer of God’s scared house. Why He didn’t choose you to be the treasurer of His house but He chosen me?”. his presence Ali (a.s.) told them that: “I want to participate in your discussion and boasting”. They agreed and he said: “I have more priority over you two, because I am the first person from among the community who has believed in the Prophet’s declaration and has immigrated with him and has strived in God’s way”. Then they, all, went to the Prophet (s.a.) and told him what they had said about themselves. But he didn’t say anything in response, and they returned. After several days Gabriel (a.s.) was sent down to deliver a verse about this story from the Exalted God. The Prophet (s.a.) called them and recited the following verse for them: “What! do you make (one who undertakes) the giving of drink to the pilgrims and the guarding of the sacred mosque like him who believes in Allah and the latter day and strives hard in Allah’s way? they are not equal with Allah; and Allah does not guide the unjust people”.
Many of tradition memorizers and scholars have narrated the preceded story and revelation of that verse entirely and shortly. Some of them are as follows: Wahedi in ‘Asbab al-nozul, Ghortabi in his exegesis book, Razi in tafsir Kabir, Khazin in his exegesis book and Hafiz Siyuty in al-Dur al-Manthur. [18]
Some of the former poets who kept the meaning and souls of traditions through their poetries, have made poems out of that story and the verse. Here we mention some of them; Seyyed al-Shu’ara Hemyari, Nashi’, Bushnavi and others.
7. ﴿إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ سَيَجْعَلُ لَهُمُ الرَّحْمَنُ وُدًّا﴾surely (as for) those who believe and do good deeds for t them will allah bring about love”. [19]
Abu Ishaq Tha’labi has narrated in his exegesis [20] book (with the documentation of Bara’ ibn ‘Azib) that: “the Prophet (s.a.) told Ali (a.s.) that: “O Ali, say to God: O God, I ask you to do something for me. Assign my love in the hearts of believers”. After this prayer, God revealed the preceded verse and answered Amir al-Mumenin’s prayer.
In Riyza al-Nazarah [21] Muhibbuddin Tabari has narrated from ibn Hanafiyah through Hafiz Salafi that he said about the verse that: “surely there is the love of Ali and his Ahlul-Bayt in the heart of each believer”.
8. ﴿امْ حَسِبَ الَّذِينَ اجْتَرَحُوا السَّيِّئَاتِ أّن نَّجْعَلَهُمْ کَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ سَوَاء مَّحْيَاهُم وَمَمَاتُهُمْ سَاء مَا يَحْکُمُونَ﴾nay! do those who have wrought evil deeds think that we will make them like those who believe and do good-- that their life and their death shall be equal? evil it is that they judge”. [22]
Abu Muzaffar Sabt ibn Jouzi has stated in Tazkarah al-Khawas [23] that: “Soddy has narrated from ibn Abbas that this verse has been revealed about Ali (a.s.) on the day of Badr. This part “الَّذِينَ اجْتَرَحُوا السَّيِّئَاتِ” is referred to ‘Utbah, Shaybah, Walid and Mughayrah. And this part “کَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ” is refered to Ali (a.s.).
9. ﴿إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ أُوْلَئِکَ هُمْ خَيْرُ الْبَرِيَّةِ﴾(as for) those who believe and do good, surely they are the -best of men”. [24]
In Tafsir [25], Tabari has narrated from Muhammad ibn Ali (with the documentation of Abu Jarud) about the verse that the Prophet (s.a.) said: “your followers and you are Khayr al-Baryyah (the best of creatures)”.
Kharazmi has narrated from Jabir in Manaqib book [26] that he said: “we were in the presence of the Prophet (s.a.) when Ali ibn Aby Talib came there. The Prophet (s.a.) said: “my brother came to you”. Then he turned to Ka’bah and said: “I swear to whom my soul is in hand that this person and his followers are prosperous on the day of resurrection. He also said that: “he (Ali) is the first person from among you who accompanied me on the faith and he is the best person to fulfill God’s promise. He is the greatest man to follow God’s command and the most righteous among you to behave with the people. Ali is the most informed man of dividing the properties fairly and equally and he is the greatest man in virtues and goodness, before God”. Then Jaber said: “at this time, this verse ((as for) those who believe and do) was revealed about Ali (a.s.) and after that when Ali attended a meeting Prophet’s (s.a.) companions said that: “the best of God’s creatures came”.
Ibn Sabbagh Maliki has narrated from ibn Abbas (which has been transmitted incompletely) in al-Fusul al-Muhimmah [27] that: “when this verse was revealed, the Prophet (s.a.) told Ali (a.s.) that: “on the day of Resurrection, you and your followers will enter the gathering place of Resurrection, while you will be happy and God will be satisfied with you. But your enemies will enter the gathering place of Resurrection, while they will be angry and will raise their heads because of the fetters and chains round their necks” [28].
10. ﴿وَالْعَصْرِ, إِنَّ الْإِنسَانَ لَفِي خُسْرٍ, إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ…﴾“I swear by the time, most surely man is in loss, except those who believe and do good…”[29]
Jalaluddin Siyuty has said in al-Dur al-Manthur [30] that: “ibn Marduwayh has narrated from ibn Abbas about this verse that this part (I swear by the time, most surely man is in loss) refers to Abu Jahl ibn Hosham, and this part (except those who believe and do good) refers to Ali (a.s.) and Salman”. [31]


resources and references

[1] As-Sajda Sura: 18
[2] Jame’ al-Bayan: 21:62 [collection11/ volume 21/107]
[3] Sharh al-Nahjul Balaqah 1:394; 2:103 [4/80, sermon 56; 6/292, sermon 83]
[4] Al-Anfal Sura: 62
[5] Tarikh Madinah Damishq [12/307]
[6] Al-Anfal Sura: 64
[7] Al-Ahzab Sura: 23
[8] Al-Manaqib: 188 [p.279, tradition 270]
[9] Kifayah al-Talib: 122 [p.249, chapter 62]
[10] Al-Sawaiq al-Muhraqah: 80 [p.134]
[11] Al-Maeda Sura: 55
[12] Al-Kashf al-Bayan: [p. 180, Al-Maeda Sura: 55]
[13] Ta-Ha Sura: 25-32
[14] Al-Qasas Sura: 35
[15] Jame’ al-Bayan: 6:165 [collecton4/ volume6/288]; Asbab al-Nuzul: 148 [p.133]; Tafsir al-Kabir 3:431 [12/26]; al-Riyaz al-Nazarah 2:227 [3/182, chpater4, unit9; p.156, unit6]; al-Bidaya wal-Nihayah 7:357 [7/394, the events of the year 40 A”H.]; Kanzul-‘Ummal 6:391 [13/108, tradition 36354]; Sawaiq al-Muhraqah: 25 [p.41]
[16] Al-Tawba Sura: 19
[17] Jame’ al-Bayan: 10:59 [collecton 6/ volume 10/95]
[18] Asbab al-Nozul: 182 [p.164]; Jame’ al-Ahkam al-Quran 8:91 [8/59]; Tafsir al-Kabir 4:422 [11/16]; Tafsir al-Khazen 2:221 [2/211]; al-Dur al-Manthur 3:218 [4/146]
[19] Maryam Sura: 96
[20] Al-Kashf wal-bayan [p. 19; Maryam Sura: 96]
[21] al-Riaz al-Nazarah 2:207 [3/157]
[22] Al-Jathiya Sura: 21
[23] Tazkarah al-Khawas: 11 [p.17]
[24] Al-Bayyina Sura: 7
[25] Jame’ al-Bayan: 30:146 [collection 15/ volume 30/264]
[26] Al-Manaqib: 66 [p.111, tradition120; p. 265, tradition 247]
[27] Al-Fusul al-Muhimma: 122 [p. 121]
[28] In Ya-Seen Sura, verse 8, it is said: “surely we have placed chains on their necks, and these reach up to their chins, so they have their heads raised aloft”
[29] Al-`Asr Sura: 1-3
[30] Al-Dur al-Manthur 6: 392 [8/622]
[31] Shafi’I Shahrudi, a comprehensive selection of al-Ghadir, p. 153
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